There was no breakfast near the motel, so I visited the Lighthouse Bakery on the way to the ferry. Cheryl brought a large cinnamon roll. She was originally from Sebastapol in California, but met her husband at a mission trip in Mississippi. She had only been at the bakery a few weeks. Her husband, retired from the Army, was about to get certified to drive a truck. When he does, they will travel together.
Two minutes later. The reviews said that the cinnamon rolls are large enough for two people. Not two touring cyclists, though.
I reached the ferry in plenty of time for the next run. My bike didn’t count as a vehicle, so it was only $6.
While waiting for the ferry, I talked with one of the crew, Jeff. He had so many entertaining stories, like the time he was doing some long haul trucking, and the only available motel in Detroit was a seedy one. When he walked up, the manager behind bulletproof glass asked how long he wanted the room for. Jeff was confused at first, but then clarified that he wanted to stay the night. The manager said give him 20 bucks. All the channels on the TV were blue, and the bed only had a fitted and top sheet. I could have listened to these stories for hours, but it was time for the ferry to leave.
Lots of these even in the small area that we traversed.
On the ferry, I met Robby and Julie, who were from central Louisiana, traveling by jeep. They had never visited this area, either.
On the other side, the road was good
Google directed me onto this bike path parallel to the highway. But the path had bumps from tree roots.
I got off the bike path at the earliest opportunity, and went straight down the highway. Much faster.
At 11, I stopped at a center in Gulf Shores, AL, that had a Dollar General, Chevron Gas Station with Store, and this Fresh Market store.
A lot cheaper than San Jose. A pound of shrimp, two cobettes of corn, and six new potatoes, for $11.99 plus tax.
Nick measured out the shrimp, and other items, and put it in the boiler.
When the food came out of the boiler, Nick put the bag inside another bag of ice, to prevent it from overcooking. I didn’t waste the ice, and later transferred it to my water bottle.
It’s enough for two people. In fact, with more corn and potatoes, this amount of shrimp could serve four. I ate less than half of the meal, and took the rest with me for dinner.
Alvin’s Island, the ABC drugstore of the Gulf coast.
The transition to Florida, at the flashing yellow lights, was unceremonious. Note the rain clouds.
So I had entered the final state on the Southern Tier.
This sign was after the actual border. Welcome to the Sunshine State.
Google routed me onto this road. Really?
The road led to this Greenway path, which I stayed on for a mile. This would have made a good day tour. The swamp is right below, and I saw a turtle on a log. Didn’t see any alligators, unfortunately.
I passed through poor neighborhoods in the final miles to the motel. Small lots with 4 run down trailer homes crammed onto them. Domestic disputes in the streets.
My initial destination, the Relax Inn. The sign said $40 a day.
Too bad they had no room.
Across the street was the Royal Arms Motel. No one was in at the office, and there was no answer to the bell.
Maybe God was leading me away somewhere else.
A few blocks away were two more motels. I checked into the Western Inn. It was $75 plus tax for a non-smoking, downstairs room with wi-fi.
Doesn’t look too bad.
This is the sink, turned off as far as I could.
The shower was also kind of jerry-rigged, but fully functional. The wi-fi is good, and the room doesn’t have bugs, as far as I can see. I would have no gripes at all, if the price had been $55.
Walmart was a couple blocks down. I rode over, and noticed 3 other motels in the area. Looked like I might have been able to find something cheaper than the Western Inn, but it was no time for buyer’s remorse. Perhaps I had been led to the Western for a reason.
My lower water bottle has worn down. My guess is that every time I hit a hard bump, the front fork bends just enough to let the wheel sand the water bottle down just a little bit.
There are definite holes in the lid, and inside, the water is full of road grit kicked up, especially during rainy weather. Since I had not actually used the bottom bottle in weeks, I decided to simply throw it away and not replace it.
Tomorrow, I hope to make Crestview, and find a reasonable motel for two days.
Miles today: 60.7, not counting ferry ride
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